Another exciting weekend of the Prva Liga is in the books! Round 12 of the 2021-22 season gave us 16 goals and an instant classic between Dinamo Zagreb and Rijeka. The weekend saw two surprising comebacks from Dinamo and Hrvatski Dragovoljac, and a surprising result in the Dalmatinski Derbi between Hajduk Split and Šibenik.
Last-placed Hrvatski Dragovoljac hosted sixth-placed Lokomotiva Zagreb to open the 12th round of the season. A 9th minute header from 21 year-old striker Sandro Kulenović gave Lokomotiva an early lead, followed by a SCREAMER from 18 year-old wunderkind Lukas Kačavenda in the 17th minute to make it 2-0. Kačavenda has been on fire for Lokomotiva and Croatia’s U-21s in the 2021-22 season, and is rumored to become a Dinamo Zagreb player in the winter. Dragovoljac answered in the 30th minute of the match, thanks to a goal scored by Benedik Mioč off a deflection, followed by tidy finish in the 58th minute scored by Andrej Lukić. The match ended in a 2-2 tie, a disappointing result for the Lokosi. CroatianSports’ Man of the Match: Andrej Lukić
Fifth-placed Gorica hosted eighth-placed Istra in the second match of the weekend. An own-goal from Istra midfielder Frano Milnar in the 12th minute was cancelled out by a fantastic goal scored by Hassane Bandé in the 53th minute, his fifth goal of the season. The match, statistically dominated by Istra, ended in a 1-1 tie. Gorica has been unable to escape their average slump of matches this year, following two memorable seasons in the Prva Liga. CroatianSports’ Man of the Match: Hassane Bandé
First-placed Rijeka and third-placed Dinamo Zagreb delivered the most intense match of the season in the third game of the weekend at Stadion HNK Rijeka. Josip Drmić opened the scoreline in the 7th minute for Rijeka, followed by a second in the 38th minute. Darko Velkovski made Rijeka’s Armada roar for a third time in the 41st minute, and Rijeka entered the halftime break with a 3-0 lead. A Bruno Petković penalty put Dinamo on the scoreboard in the 58th minute, followed by another penalty converted by Petković in the 65th minute to make it 3-2. A little over five minutes later, Mislav Oršić thought he had scored the equalizer, only for the goal to be disallowed by VAR in the 75th minute. Unlikely hero Komnen Andrić found the back of the net in the 82nd minute, scoring the official equalizer of the match. The match ended in a 3-3 tie, a heartbreaking result for Rijeka. CroatianSports’ Man of the Match: Josip Drmić
Struggling ninth-placed Slaven Belupo hosted second-placed Osijek in the fourth matchup of the weekend. As expected, Osijek took a first-half lead thanks to a 22nd minute goal scored by Amer Hiroš. 22 year-old Darko Nejašmić added to Osijek’s lead in the 45th minute of the match, giving Osijek a deserved 2-0 lead entering halftime. Osijek remained strong in the back throughout the rest of the match, and the match ended in a 2-0 victory for the visitors. Osijek are proving to be serious title contenders this season. CroatianSports’ Man of the Match: Darko Nejašmić
Hajduk fans, you can stop reading now.
Seventh-placed Šibenik hosted fourth-placed Hajduk Split in the final match of the round. The Dalmatinski Derbi’s scoreline opened in Šibenik’s favor, as Marcos Mina found the back of the net in the 25th minute. Mario Ćurić sealed the victory for Šibenik in the 84th minute, converting a penalty against his former club. Despite attempting 17 shots and holding possession of the ball for 61% of the match, Hajduk was held to a shutout by the hosts. What’s the excuse going to be this time? CroatianSports’ Man of the Match: Mario Ćurić
Hajdukovci, here’s a trophy to make your week a little better <3